FFA students in Calvin and Stuart will soon have robots and new lab kits to help introduce elementary, middle and secondary school students to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education and careers after being named recipients of a $5,000 grant from Public Service Company of Oklahoma (PSO) and the American Electric Power (AEP) Foundation.
The STEM After-School Grants program is made possible through a partnership between the Oklahoma FFA Foundation and PSO, a unit of AEP. A total of $36,000 in grants is being awarded to 15 Oklahoma FFA chapters in this inaugural year for the program. Chapters receiving the grants must be active in the 2018-2019 school year.
With their grant, Calvin and Stuart FFA programs will collaborate to raise awareness and promote recruitment and retention of students into FFA through programs and activities that focus on engineering, coding and critical thinking. The grant will cover the purchase of five Lego Mindstorm ev3 robots, three Lego power functions motor sets, two KIPR robotics kits and curriculum, as well as other materials to help support the programs. The Calvin and Stuart FFA chapters will share all materials on a rotating basis.
“In today’s world, STEM-related knowledge and skills are keys to success in any career path,” said Frank Phillips, PSO Manager for External Affairs – McAlester. “The grants are aimed at providing FFA students opportunities to learn and grow in these STEM fields, and then use those skills and knowledge to enhance their future and that of our state.”
PSO, a unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), is an electric utility company serving more than 550,000 customers accounts in eastern and southwestern Oklahoma. Based in Tulsa, PSO has nearly 3,800 megawatts of generating capacity and is one of the largest distributors of wind energy in the state. News releases and other information about PSO can be found at www.PSOklahoma.com.